College basketball coaches and players call it one of the most hostile environments to play in.
The noise created by fans, which has been measured at 125 decibels â€“â€“ the pain threshold for the human ear is 130 â€“â€“ is an intense force.
CSU basketball, welcome to The Pit.
The Rams travel to Albuquerque, N.M. to face the 17-3 Lobos Saturday and will walk into a court 37 feet underground, greeted by 18, 018 raucous fans.
â€œThe Pit is definitely the toughest place Iâ€™ve ever played at,â€ said junior guard Adam Nigon. â€œIt is a hostile crowd and they really get on you.â€
Coming off a tough loss Wednesday night against UNLV, the Rams (11-7, 2-2 MWC) will need to turn it around quick against the second place Lobos who were ranked earlier this season.
Athletic guard Darington Hobson, who averages 15.6 points per game, leads the New Mexico attack. Roman Martinez (14.0) and Phillip McDonald (11.2) contribute to create a formidable trio for the Lobos.
â€œTheyâ€™re a great team, and theyâ€™re great at home,â€ said CSU head coach Tim Miles. â€œThey are very athletic and will attack you in a number of ways.â€
Since starting MWC play 2-0 and sharing a tie for first place, the Rams have dropped two in a row to BYU and UNLV. Ending that losing streak is the number one objective for the Rams.
Freshman point guard Dorian Green, who is experiencing his first go-around at conference play, has learned how deep and good the MWC is.
â€œItâ€™s a very tough conference,â€ Green said. â€œAny team on any given night can beat the other team. We hope to do that to New Mexico. We feel we should have beaten UNLV.â€
Mental mistakes at critical times killed the Rams against UNLV in a game Miles said the team should have won.
The team held a two-hour film session Thursday, reviewing those mistakes.
â€œIt was brutal,â€ Nigon said. â€œIt was our lack of execution and mental lapses that lost the game. We need to correct that against New Mexico.â€
After the two-game losing streak, the Rams sit right in the middle of the conference standings with three teams tied at 2-2. Miles said CSU is not far from beating one of the upper-echelon teams in the MWC.
â€œWe have a chance if weâ€™re consistent on offense and play 40 minutes of solid team defense,â€ Miles said.
The Rams tip off against the Lobos at 1:30 p.m. Saturday.
Menâ€™s basketball beat reporter Stephen Meyers can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- When: Saturday
- Time: 1:30 p.m.
- Where: Albuquerque, N.M.
- Watch: The Mtn.